Snowboy is busy saving the Polar Bear King when Greenbackboy approaches him with an idea for a game called KA-CHING—a game that will make them rich. It’s easy: all they need to do is cut down all of the trees in the forest and catch all of the fish in the ocean and trade it in for piles and piles of shiny KA-CHING. But if all the trees are gone, they won’t be able to breathe. And what is a sea without fish? Their world would be inhospitable. Since Greenbackboy can’t see the forest for the trees, it’s up to Snowboy to trust his instinct to protect and nurture, rather than destroy. In a tale that glimmers with quiet power and hope, Hiawyn Oram transforms a universal cautionary tale into an accessible and imaginative fantasy, made all the more vivid by Birgitta Sif’s beautiful and atmospheric artwork.
Growing up in South Africa I came to love insects and animals except for snakes with whom I had three nasty, close encounters. On leaving school I studied English and Drama at the University of KwaZulu Natal and once I’d graduated I travelled, got caught up in student riots in Paris and worked as an advertising copywriter in Johannesburg and London. My first book was called SKITTLEWONDER AND THE WIZARD published by Andersen Press and my latest - and 100th - is FLAT CAT illustrated by the brilliant Gwen Millward. Inbetween I’ve worked with many publishers and some amazing illustrators and my books have been translated into more than 30 languages. My RUMBLEWICK series, illustrated by Sarah Warburton, about a witch’s familiar whose witch wants to be anything but a witch, was optioned for an animated movie in 2010 although, sob, sob, there’s still nothing to see and probably never will be.
Some of my favourite work has been writing script and lyrics for musicals namely THE MERMAID, THE VACKEES and LAST TRAIN TO TOMORROW, a concert piece for orchestra, choir and actors about the Kindertransport Movement of 1939. I live in London, the busy, bustling capital of the United Kingdom, where I can usually be found quietly writing or painting something.